If you have seen the movie, Whalerider, you know that there is a scene where the young girl climbs upon the back of a beached whale and rides it back into the sea. “I am not afraid to die,” she says (or words to that effect). As she goes underwater, you fear that she will, but she survives and becomes the leader of her tribe.
“The true you emerges when there is no attempt to prove anything to anyone.”
(Vernon Kitabu Turner, Soul Sword)
We are a puny bunch of people these days, are we not? Riding whales into the oceanic depths is only something that people do in the movies. I have a hard time driving in traffic. But this story moved me. It is a call to spiritual warriorship. Turner writes compellingly about warriorship. “There are many ways to flow with the wind. One way is to trust yourself to be yourself.”
Spirituality is that in us which is undivided; the mind cannot go beyond its element. We must trust the process of surrender if we are to go beneath the waves of sorrow and resurface with our spirit intact. I have only begun to make this journey of riding my soul back to its native home. My mind encourages me to postpone the journey. To stay and argue with people about rules and regulations, about insurance and appointments shown on the calendar. I do not have to die to honor these commitments. I can continue living a plastic life, compartmentalized and sane. But underneath the sea rages.
I have a CD by Herding Cats that I like. There is a line in one song about where the black waters roll. I can almost physically feel these black waters in my body as the song plays. I know these waters well. Don’t we all? Where is our courage on any given day? Bob had to get five vials of blood drawn yesterday when he exited the trial drug study that he was on. The nurse who was drawing his blood had great difficulty in getting enough blood to come out. There were four people watching and we were all cringing. I asked him twice if he was okay, and he said that he was. Once we got home, I was able to let my hair down and feel the accumulated stress in my body.
Today we sat and meditated for a while. We talked about regaining our spirit during the next three weeks that he has off before resuming chemo once again. We have been violated by a society that values knowledge above spirit and answers above the process of questioning. It is time for us to ride the whale back into the sea.
I feel so alone in all of this. The past three years since Bob’s diagnosis have been difficult. But it cannot be otherwise. This is a spiritual journey as well as a physical one. Only spirit can prove strong enough to endure what lies ahead.
*Excerpted from Vicki’s book,LIFE WITH A HOLE IN IT: That’s How The Light Gets In.